The 2021 season has just ended and we are already talking about what will happen next year. As everyone knows by now, the Australian government has imposed the obligation of vaccination for all players registered for the Australian Open 2022.
The name of Novak Djokovic is on the Happy Slam entry list, but this does not mean that the number 1 of the world will actually fly to Melbourne. The Serbian phenomenon has never wanted to reveal his vaccination status and has not yet expressed himself with certainty regarding his participation in the AOs.
The Rod Laver Arena is the stadium in which Nole has achieved the most success, having imposed himself in the last three editions of the tournament (nine times overall). In the event of a 'Down Under' triumph, the 34-year-old from Belgrade would rise to 21 Majors and overtake Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal in the all-time rankings.
2021 allowed Djokovic to catch up with his eternal rivals at 20 Grand Slams, as well as having a gluttonous chance to overtake the US Open. However, tension and a Daniil Medvedev in a state of grace prevented him from achieving the 'Calendar Grand Slam'
In recent days, some media have spread the rumor of a possible medical exemption for Novak's benefit. An indiscretion that was immediately denied by Australian Open director Craig Tiley. Ross Stevenson, a well-known radio host, analyzed this delicate situation on the '3AW' broadcaster.
Stevenson on Novak Djokovic
“Novak Djokovic is a man who established his anti-vaccination status 12 months ago. The only reason there is an Australian Open is that 92% of Victorians are vaccinated! It would be a joke if he were allowed in with a medical exemption when 92% of the people of Victoria had been vaccinated, which explains the existence of the Open.
I would like to talk to Craig Tiley and say, “You sure are not going to get run over by this guy" - Ross Stevenson stated. When the initial entry list of players who could compete at the Australian Open next year was released, discussions arose after seeing the name of Novak Djokovic in the list.
Soon, those discussions turned themselves into conclusive evidence in the minds of people that the Serb had been given ‘special exemption’ to play. Now, Australian prime minister Scott Morrison also backed Tiley’s comments and responded, “He will follow the same rules as anyone else would. There are no special rules for tennis players or anyone else”.